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Oreo Brownies

I’ve been meaning to break the silence here. Its been far too long and I have typed out posts atleast half a dozen times. Each time to hit the discard button because the posts were either too boring or angsty or some other form of irrelevance. Anyway I will come back and write when I really feel like doing it and in the meanwhile here is a recipe that gathered quite some interest when I posted the picture to my instagram feed.

oreo brownie bites

oreo brownie bites

Use cookies, chocolate chips or even sliced and slivered nuts to your convenience. I am not one of those baker / cooks that goes psycho if an ingredient is missing. I check if the recipe can be adapted and go ahead. However if there are 3 ingredients of a recipe missing, then I simply postpone making that recipe or select another one that works with the ingredients I have. It is quite painful to attempt a recipe when 3 or more ingredients are missing because the end will be nothing like what was promised and one discounts all the changes one made, and yet feels frustrated. Have you ever had that happen?

This is a recipe that I eyeballed based on a basic recipe I have in my head. I have made versions of it and it always turns out good. Personally I am a fudgy brownie fiend. But I find that it is too rich most of the time and that a cakey brownie sometimes makes the cut much more easily. So here it is my recipe for cakey oreo brownies. In the picture below, I’ve used the same recipe and swapped out the Oreos for slivered almonds.

Almond Brownies

Almond Brownies

Cakey Oreo Brownies

(Makes one 9×9 pan or 12 cupcake sized brownie bites)

1 cup Dark chocolate (chopped from a slab of cooking chocolate, I use a brand called Morde)

1/2 cup Butter (unsalted)

3/4 cup Sugar (powdered for easier mixing)

3/4 cup Maida

2 eggs at room temperature

1 teaspoon instant coffee powder (I used bru)

1 tablespoon vanilla extract (home made vanilla extract) or 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

10 Oreo cookies, sliced into halves (or 1/4 cup slivered almonds, walnuts or hazelnuts)

Sift the maida and set aside.

Melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave by zapping it for 60 seconds over moderate heat, in two rounds. Stir in between melting this so that the chocolate doesn’t burn. Heat it for another 30-45 seconds to melt everything evenly. If there are lumps, stir it with a spatula or a whisk till smooth.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and prepare the baking pan with parchment paper or line a muffin pan with paper liners

When the chocolate and butter mix has slightly cooled (about 4-5 minutes), stir in the sugar and whisk well till melted.

Crack the eggs one at a time into the melted chocolate mixture and beat them well with a whisk, adding half the vanilla after each egg.

Stir in the coffee powder and add the maida in two batches, stirring gently till it is all mixed. Once the flour is added, do not over mix the batter or mix too vigorously. This activates the gluten in the flour and makes the brownie (or cake/ cookie) very tough.

Pour the batter into the prepared baking tin or into the muffin pan. Arrange the halved Oreo cookies on the top of the batter. If using nuts, sprinkle them evenly on top of the batter. Bake for 24-26 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius or till a toothpick comes out clean. Each oven is different, so do the toothpick test.

If baking in muffin cups, the  baking time will be 15-16 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack for 15-20 minutes or completely before slicing into squares. Dust with powdered sugar if desired or just dig in.

These brownies are a great make ahead potluck, party or tiffin box treat and will stay fresh at room temperature for a few days or for a week when refrigerated.

Mango cupcakes with mango buttercream frosting

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Mango Cupcakes with Mango Butter-cream

Mango Cupcakes with Mango Butter-cream

I am nothing if not a mango fiend. I brave the summers in Hyderabad only because of the fabulous array of mangoes we get here. The most popular and commercially successful one is the Banaganapalli. While my favourites are Shakkar gutli (a small apple sized mango that is sweet as sugar – shakkar +sugar) and Imampasand for its flavour, the humble banaganapalli is a good fruit to use in bakes and desserts.

I made my basic vanilla cupcake recipe and swapped out the vanilla for a dash of mango essence and pulp. The result was a moist, subtle mango cupcake. I went a few steps further and slapped on some mango flavoured buttercream. My mantra seems to be “when in doubt, go the whole hog”

I made this for a party and it was a huge hit. Try this with fresh mango pulp while the last of the season slowly inches out or with frozen if you cannot get fresh mangoes in your part of the world.

Mango Cupcakes with Mango Butter-cream

Mango Cupcakes with Mango Butter-cream

Mango Cupcakes (makes 12 medium ones)

½ cup unsalted butter at room temperature

2/3 cup sugar (I used regular sugar, powdered for ease of mixing)

2 eggs ( use 3 tablespoons of plain yogurt for an egg-less variant)

1 teaspoon mango essence

1 ½ cup all purpose flour

1 ½ teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

1/2 cup of mango puree (mango pieces chopped and pureed in a blender with a splash of water)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenhiet or 175 Celsius and line muffin trays with paper liners

Cream butter and sugar till light and fluffy. Add the yogurt (or eggs, beating well after each addition) and beat well. Beat in the mango essence.

In another bowl, whisk the flour with salt, baking soda and baking powder

Add the mango puree and flour to the butter-sugar mixture alternately, beginning and ending with flour.

Evenly fill the paper liners with batter and bake for 18-20 minutes or till a tester comes out clean.

Leave to cool on a wire rack before frosting.

Edited to add: Sometimes the consistency of the mango pulp/ puree can make the batter thicker than desired. Adding 2-3 tablespoons of milk / water to the batter to get cake batter consistency will help.

For the mango butter-cream frosting

1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature

11/2 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar / icing sugar

1/2 teaspoon mango essence

1 pinch of salt

1/2 cup mango puree

Whip the butter for 1 minute on medium speed with a hand whisk/ blender until creamy. Add the sugar in 2-3 batches and whip on low speed till it has mixed well. Add the salt, essence and mango puree and mix till blended. Use as required. If the buttercream is too runny, add upto 3/4 cup more icing sugar to make piping consistency.

I used a star tip nozzle to pipe swirls on the cooled cupcakes. Added a few slivers of chopped fresh mango as garnish.

 

Mango Cupcakes with Mango Butter-cream

Mango Cupcakes with Mango Butter-cream

 

A Simple Choco Chip Chocolate Cake Recipe

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The first month of 2014 is in its third week. And right on cue, I am posting now despite having all the intentions of posting my first post before the first week! One thing that comes back to bite me over and over again is the glaring fact that occasions hardly mean anything to me. I cannot commemorate a date (unless it happens to be Amma’s birthday) or something like India hosting the Olympics or something. I mean it has to be really big!

I’ve not been good with having and sticking to a schedule! hello, I couldn’t even post when I announced an event on my own blog!

The old year finally rolled out. I swear am not going to revisit the tumultuous time. If you are interested in a really verbose story, you can read all about it in my other blog.

For this year, I have no grand plans or schemes. I just want honest and simple blogging. To share a piece of my story, or a mundane routine, or a recipe I tried and liked. I do not know how often I will post, or the quality of my pictures, or when I will finally work through the archive of photographs I have. But whenever I have something I want to say to you, my dearest readers, I will come here and type out… sometimes furiously, sometimes labouring over days to say it.

I do not have a card reader slot in my new laptop, it is a royal pain to transfer photographs from my (proper) camera to the blog. I’ve decided to post pictures that I take with my phone till I get that sorted. A low quality picture shouldn’t come in the way of a blog post right? Right!

Choco Chip Chocolate Cake

Choco Chip Chocolate Cake

I was chatting (I do that all the time) with my namesake and she sent me a picture of the cake she baked with her son. I had to make it immediately. It was that tempting. In record time, I baked and texted her back a picture with my changes. This is a super easy and wholesome cake. It is not cloyingly sweet and is a good candidate for a douse of chocolate ganache or even icecream. Perfect for those who want a bite of a nice warm piece of homemade cake.

In many ways, this cake is so like my life and therefore my blogging. It can be everything you want it to be, dressed up, glammed out and yet, at the core, it remains a solid fall back recipe which anyone can make. It has ingredients you do not have to run out of the house to buy and yet, when the cake is almost baked, the heady aroma whets your appetite and makes you look forward to a generous slice.

Choco Chip Chocolate Cake

Choco Chip Chocolate Cake

Choco Chip Chocolate Cake (Makes an 8 inch round cake)

Adapted from the Singing Chef’s Milk Chocolate Cake Recipe

Ingredients

1 cup Flour

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons Butter

1/2 cup Sugar

1/2 cup Milk

1 Egg

1 tsp Vanilla Essence

1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder

A pinch of Salt

2 tablespoons Cocoa Powder

1/2 cup Choco chips

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line the bottom and sides of a 8″ round cake tin with butter paper and brush with melted butter or neutral vegetable oil.

Sift the flour with the cocoa powder, baking powder and salt and set aside.

Beat the butter and sugar in a bowl. Add the egg and beat again. Add the milk and vanilla and beat for 30 seconds. Add the sifted flour mixture and mix gently with a spoon or a spatula, until well incorporated.  Add the choco chips and mix, reserving a few to sprinkle on top.

Pour this batter into the prepared cake tin. Sprinkle the reserved chocolate chips on the top, give the cake pan 1-2 sharp raps on the counter top to settle the batter. Bake for 24-26 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.

Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and cut into 9-12 wedges. The cake that is leftover can be stored in an airtight box at room temperature for 2-3 days. If storing longer, refrigerate.

Serve as is, with a dollop of vanilla ice-cream or a douse of chocolate sauce.

Boozey Christmas Fruit Cake

Ever since I started writing this blog, I have visions of creating fabulous posts for Christmas. Each year I plan to make wonderfully festive stuff and post here. Some years I manage, like the year I made and posted these beautiful Date and Fig Ravioli that still count as the best Christmas cookies I have ever baked. Some years I just summarise what I have made in a post that marks Christmas atleast 6 weeks late.

Traditionally in my family, rich fruit plum cake is baked. The dried fruit is bought and soaked in rum by september and the baking and preparation for the festival began atleast a week in advance. The first thing to get done would be the cake, followed by murukku, rose cookies and sometimes kalkals. This is in my mother’s house. Each year, depending on my mood and fancy, things change in the escapades household. Now more than ever, I miss having a large family gathering. For the last few years, Christmas day has been spent with K’s family joining us for lunch, and our friends come home in the evening for drinks and dinner. A couple of years, I had largish parties. This year I am doing almost nothing. I still have no concrete plans.

I spent today baking my version of the fruit cake. It has never disappointed me and each year I feel somehow that this only gets better. I would have ideally liked to bake this cake atleast a week ago and have enough time to feed it with rum / brandy, but if you know anything about me, you will already know that I am not a planner.

So this morning I woke up feeling like a grouch and decided I’d had enough of this non festivity. Proceeded post breakfast to make some cake. I have made three kinds of cake this year. Boozey Christmas Fruit Cake which I am sharing in this post. Another version of this cake that I teach in my classes and a quick Caramel dried fruit eggless cake which I will share in another post. Hopefully I will post all of them before this evening, but there is no telling!

Boozey Plum Cake

Boozey Plum Cake

This is a long list of ingredients and has atleast 3 steps. the soaking of the fruit and making of the caramel can be done much ahead of time.

So here is the recipe for my Boozey Christmas Fruit Cake  (Makes two 9X9 inch cakes or 10 3X4 loaves which can be baked in aluminium tins used to pack takeaway)

I made the batter in the food processor with the plastic blades used to make batter. Feel free to make this by hand, or use a hand mixer.

PS: Ensure all ingredients are at room temperature

1 Cup Unsalted Butter

1 Cup Brown Sugar (powdered to ensure quicker mixing)

3 Cups Maida, sifted and then measured

3 teaspoons Baking Powder

1 teaspoon Baking Soda

1 teaspoon Salt

2 teaspoons Cinnamon Powder

2 teaspoons Ground dried ginger

2 teaspoons dried or fresh orange peel

1/2 teaspoon Allspice powder

1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder

3 teaspoons Vanilla Essence / extract

3 large Eggs

1/2 Cup Applesauce

1 teaspoon Instant Coffee Powder

3/4 cup Caramel Syrup

3 Cups dried fruit soaked in rum

To soak the fruit

Equal parts of Golden raisins, black raisins, apricots, dates, figs, tutti fruiti and a small sprinkling of cranberries (optional) are soaked in Dark rum for atleast 1 day or upto 1 year in advance. Chop the large fruit such as dates and apricots into small pieces before soaking.

To make the caramel syrup

In a heavy bottomed pan, heat 1/2 cup of white sugar on medium high heat without stirring till it begins to caramelise. Heat 1/2 cup of water side by side. When the sugar becomes uniformly golden, stir with a wooden spoon and begin to add the water a little at a time, stirring to ensure there are no lumps. heat through till the water is all mixed with the burnt sugar. If the caramel becomes lumpy, reduce the heat and continue to stir and cook till the sugar lumps melt. Cool completely before using. Caramel can be made ahead and kept in the fridge for a few weeks.

To make the Apple sauce (Makes 1/2 cup)

Skin and core 1 medium sized red apple, chop into pieces and pressure cook with 2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon sugar (if the apples are not sweet). Once cool, blend to a smooth puree and use as needed.

For the Cake

Preheat the oven to 170 C. Butter and line 2 9X9 square metal cake pans or smaller aluminium takeaway tins.

Sift the flour with the baking powder, baking soda, salt, instant coffee, ground spice powders. Set aside.

Beat the butter till fluffy. Add the sugar and beat till the granules disappear and the mixture has become fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time and beat well after each addition. Add a teaspoon of vanilla after the addition of each egg and beat.

Mix the cooled caramel syrup with the apple sauce and stir well. In 3-4 parts, add the sifted flour alternating with the caramel-apple sauce mixture and mix gently into the butter-sugar-eggs mix. Do this till all the flour and caramel apple sauce has been used. With a spatula, mix in the soaked dried fruit.

Divide this mixture between pans. If using the 9X9 inch pan, bake for 45-55 minutes, checking for done-ness with a toothpick.

If baking in smaller pans, bake 3 tins together for about 25-35 minutes, checking with a toothpick at 23 minutes and adjusting baking time.

Once done, remove onto a wire rack and cool completely in the pan before slicing.

This cake can be made more boozey by poking holes on the top once cooled and sprinkling 1-2 teaspoons of rum / brandy every day for upto 10 days. Make sure to wrap tightly in clingfilm or foil before storing.

Celebrations Galore ~ Baked Yogurt Tart in an Oatmeal Crust

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Celebrations galore today. 65 years of the birth of India. Despite the warts, still beautiful and engaging. All we need to do now is to deserve all that she has to offer us.

100 years of the woman I knew not much about until my favourite actress Meryl Streep brought her to life and exposed me to what a phenomenal influence she was on home cooks. All those of us who follow a passion, will learn important lessons of following our hearts from Julia Child.

Baked Yogurt Tart with Blueberries, Orange Zest and Almonds

Baked Yogurt Tart with Blueberries, Orange Zest and Almonds

In the midst of all of this, is hanging out with friends, so what if it is online and spread over 6 cities in two countries. We, (Arundhati, Arundathi, Aparna, Nandita and I) have baked together earlier, this month onwards, Monika joins us. Frantic back and forth on facebook about baking in tandem to celebrate Julia’s birth centenary went on. Posting recipes, coming up with options for ingredients we did or did not have, frame by frame advances and updates as we tackled various stages of the tart baking. Believe me when I say it was so much fun. That’s what happens when you make friends with people who have the same passions as you do. After a bit of a hiatus after two baking escapades, the baking club, now called The Sisterhood of the Traveling Cake Tins, decided on Julia Child’s Baked Yogurt Tart.

Pardon me if I say so myself, but this tart is perhaps one of the best things I have baked in a while, and there is a decent amount of baking that happens at the Escapades household. It has a cheesecake like texture and is not overtly sweet which is just the way I like my baked treats. Plus there is very little argue about the reasonably healthy dessert it automatically becomes when there is oats and yogurt in it.

Baked Yogurt Tart

Baked Yogurt Tart

Each one of the six of us used ingredients we had on hand, so each of the tarts is amazingly different. I loved how we interpreted it and added our own touches. I admit I am not one of those people who will run out and shop for ingredients for a recipe. I usually try to substitute what I have on hand, or skip to another recipe if I don’t have more than a couple of the listed ingredients. In this case, I didn’t have vanilla (horror for a self confessed baker!). I find that I am using a lot of orange zest instead and this tart too was no different. I loved how it paired with the yogurt and frozen blueberries. I didn’t have fresh fruit on hand, so used some of my stash of frozen blueberries. I was a bit anxious about how it would turn out, but was very happy with the results.

There is a celebration of Julia’s legacy to commemorate her 100 th Birth Anniversary by PBS with  “Cook For Julia” through the month of August. To join them, simply cook any one of Julia Child’s recipes. The deadline to join the party is 15th of August and as always, I make it by the skin of my teeth!

So here it is, my version of the Baked Yogurt Tart. I used a no roll pie crust from this recipe as the base.

Baked Yogurt Tart with Blueberries, Almonds and Orange Zest in an Oatmeal Pie Crust

(Adapted from Julia Child’s Baked Yogurt Tart and the Crust is from Baked Obsession’s Oatmeal Crust)

Ingredients

For the Crust (Makes one 9 inch tart shell)
½ cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 cup old-fashioned oats (I used Quaker’s quick cooking oats)
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter; melted and cooled (I used Amul’s Lite Bread Spread)
1 egg, beaten, for sealing the dough

For the Tart Filling
3 medium Eggs
3/4 cup Sugar
2 cups thick plain yogurt (I used one 200 ml tub of store bought yogurt, drained out the whey)
1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
¾ cup All Purpose Flour
A large pinch of salt
1/3 cup coarsely chopped Almonds (use any nuts of your choice or leave out if you have allergies)
1 cup frozen blueberries (I rinsed the frozen berries and left them in a sieve to drain out till needed, use any fresh berries or stone fruit you have)

To Make the Crust

Lightly butter the tart pan with removable bottom. Pulse the oats in the mixer to make a fairly smooth flour. In a bowl stir together the dry ingredients.
Add the melted and cooled butter, stir to combine. Press the mixture evenly into the pan to make a crust at the bottom and all the way up the sides of the pan. I used the bottom of a steel tumbler to press it down firmly.
Chill for about 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Put a piece of baking paper or foil in the tart shell, add some pie weights such as uncooked rice or uncooked beans and bake the tart crust for about 20 min, until it is set and pale golden.
Brush the bottom with the beaten egg, and then bake again for about 5 minutes until set and shiny to prevent the crust from becoming soggy.
Cool the tart crust. (I skipped this step and filled the still pretty warm crust with the yogurt mixture)

Tart Pan: I used a 6 inch glass tart pan (in fact a 1½ inch deep lid of a casserole. Lined it with aluminum foil which I then buttered before pressing the tart shell into it. I also used two 3 inch tart pans with removable bottoms.

To Make the Filling

Beat together the eggs and the sugar till pale and thick. I used the blender jar of the mixer. Whisk the yogurt and salt to remove lumps. In a bowl, fold the yogurt into the eggs and sugar mixture along with the orange zest. Add the flour to this mixture, folding in gently. Pour this mixture into the tart shell gently till it is 2/3 full. Add the rinsed and drained frozen blueberries to the mixture, leaving about 1 inch around the edges for the nuts. Add the nuts to the edge of the pie crust. Bake for about 22 minutes at 325 F or till the middle is just set. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before chilling. Slice into wedges; dust with icing sugar and serve chilled or at room temperature.

baked yogurt custard

baked yogurt custard

I had 1 large cup of the filling leftover because my tart pan was smaller than what the recipe called for. I baked the filling for 15 minutes at 325 F without the crust in two small ramekins. Dusted it with sugar and served it as custard. The filling was just as good without the tart shell, so this is a pretty versatile recipe.

The yogurt tart is not very sweet and has a nice tang which paired well with the orange zest and blueberries. All in all, this is a keeper of a recipe.

Here are the tarts baked by my fellow bakers:

Aparna’s Yogurt Tart with Orange and Pistachios

Arundhati’s Cherry Berry Yogurt Tart

Nandita’s Baked Yogurt Berry Tart

Monika’s Baked Yogurt Tart with Fresh Figs and Blueberries

Baking ~ Whole Wheat Banana Coconut Almond Bread

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Banana Coconut Almond Bread

Banana Coconut Almond Bread

This was one of my favourite cakes / quick breads to bake and photograph. It was wholesome, not overly sweet and full of nutritious bananas, coconut and almonds. Its taken almost 8 months to be posted on the blog, but then I never claimed to be regular here. The fondest memory of taking these pictures was a 4 month old Sage sitting patiently in the background, waiting for me to finish taking pictures of the banana loaf and give him some to taste.

cake and dog

cake and dog

He was battling a severe gluten intolerance at that time, so I sadly couldn’t give him more than a sliver. That habit has not changed. Every time I bring out something to click pictures of, Sage will come sit around knowing that his patience and good behaviour will pay off. This made it to an article I wrote for a magazine on how healthy eating and baking need not be boring.

On a side note, I turned a year wiser (and older) yesterday. I need to write one of those “letter to my 20 year old self” one of these days. The blog too completed 5 years in june, but i rarely remember. It is not often that I have grateful satisfied thoughts on life. This year before I get all crabby, I want to record that I am just thankful for ~ the people, the love and the experiences that have made my life what it is. This blog has played no small role in this. Thank you dear readers.

banana coconut almond whole wheat bread

Whole Wheat Banana and Coconut Bread

(Makes 12 slices, Time Taken : 20 minutes to put together, 60 minutes to bake)

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour

2 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2/3 cup sugar

2 large eggs or 4-5 tablespoons yogurt

1 cup mashed banana (2 medium-large)

1/2 cup skim milk

1/4 cup oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup shredded coconut ( I used fresh grated, desiccated or frozen should be equally good too)

1/4 cup sliced almonds (substitute with any nuts of your choice, or leave out if you have allergies)

Method:
Preheat oven 350F and lightly grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon
In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and eggs until well combined, then whisk in the mashed banana, milk, oil and vanilla extract. Pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and stir until just combined, making sure no streaks of flour remain. Stir in shredded coconut and almonds and pour batter out into prepared baking pan.
Bake for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, or with only a few moist crumbs attached.
Turn loaf out onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing

Baking ~ Possibly the best Chocolate Cupcakes I’ve made

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Last year in August, I opened up my kitchen commercially…. taking orders for custom made cupcakes from family and friends and the word spread. Why am i talking about it here? for the longest time, i felt embarrassed to post it here….but it is an extension of what i love, and you my dear blog readers deserve to know…. also, cupcakes are all the rage currently, so i thought i would put the information out there for anyone who wanted to know about where to order custom made cupcakes in Hyderabad. Look no further. Send me an email at arundati(dot)rao(at)gmail(dot)com or leave a comment here and i will get back to you. You could also leave a message for me on my Facebook page.

Recently, I made a batch of chocolate cupcakes with my regular recipe but wasn’t happy with the texture of the cocoa powder only cupcakes. I tweaked the recipe a bit and added melted dark chocolate and a pat of butter to the same batter and the cupcakes turned out like magic! deep dark full of texture and very rich. the compliments I got for these cupcakes alone should keep me from seeking any other recipe out in the future!

here is the recipe

Chocolate Cupcakes

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1 cup sugar (I powdered it finely)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup coffee decoction  (or 1 cup of warm water mixed with 1 1/2 teaspoons of instant coffee powder)

1 Tbsp white vinegar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract/ essence

6 Tbsp Vegetable oil

100 grams dark chocolate, chopped

3 tablespoons of butter, melted

METHOD

Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare a muffin tin with cupcake liners.

In a large bowl, vigorously whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt until everything is mixed well.

In the large jar attachment of a food processor (or a large bowl if doing by hand) mix together the coffee, vinegar, vanilla extract, and oil.

Melt the chocolate and butter together (you can heat in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time till just melted, then stir to mix thoroughly)

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir only until they just come together. The mixture will be thin. Add the melted butter and chocolate into the batter.

Fill the cupcake liners with batter till about 2/3 full.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or till a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

Remove from oven and let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove from pan and let cool on a rack.

Once cool, frost or eat/ serve as is.

I made 12 mini cupcakes, and 5 regular sized ones with this batter.

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